Bihar’s Grand Alliance seals deal on seats, RJD’s Tejashwi to steer


Patna, October 3

The Grand Alliance in Bihar, which includes the state’s main opposition parties, on Saturday reached a consensus on seat sharing ahead of the three-phase Assembly elections on October 28, November 3 and 7.

Rashtriya Janata Dal’s (RJD) Tejashwi Yadav was unanimously chosen the face of the coalition, with his party getting a lion’s share of seats.

Yadav’s bid to induct Vikassheel Insaan Party fails

  • Soon after the press conference, VIP president Mukesh Sahni announced that he was quitting the Grand Alliance since he did not get “a respectable offer”
  • Yadav had said his party would accommodate old alliance partner Vikassheel Insaan Party and the JMM its ally in adjoining Jharkhand from its quota of 144 seats
  • He vowed to dislodge the government headed by Nitish Kumar, whom Congress leader Avinash Pandey accused of hijacking) the mandate in the previous elections

Announcing the seat-sharing formula in the presence of leaders of the Congress, CPI (ML), CPI and CPI (M), Yadav said his party would accommodate old alliance partner Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) and the JMM its ally in adjoining Jharkhand from its quota of 144 seats in the 243-strong Assembly.

But the multi-party alliance suffered a jolt when a minor constituent Vikashheel Insaan Party (VIP) floated by Mukesh Sahni, a former Bollywood set designer, announced a dramatic exit alleging betrayal.

Among other allies, the Congress has been given 70 seats, nearly twice as many as it had contested in the 2015 Assembly poll in alliance with the RJD and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U).

The Congress will also be fielding its candidate from Valmiki Nagar Lok Sabha seat, where the bypoll will be held on November 7.

Among the Left parties, the CPI(ML) has been given 19 seats, followed by CPI six and CPI(M) four.

Yadav vowed to dislodge the government headed by Nitish Kumar, whom Congress leader Avinash Pandey in his address accused of hijacking of the mandate in the previous elections.

The JD(U) chief had fought the 2015 elections opposing the BJP led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but ended up re-aligning with the saffron party, Pandey said. — PTI



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